The stereotypical image of a pawn shop customer is a poor, desperate person hawking family jewels or rare baseball cards just to pay the rent or put food on the table. Pawn shops, however, offer real potential to bring in a hefty sum of cash. As more and more people realize this potential, they are buying inexpensive collector's items and turning around and selling them to pawn shops as a way to make a few extra dollars.
The Difference Between A Quick Loan and Making Extra Cash
Most customers that visit pawn shops are looking for a way to secure an immediate loan. In return, they provide an item of value as collateral for the amount of money the pawn shop owner offers. The average loan is about $100, according to the National Pawnbrokers Association. The customer then gets a certain amount of time, such as 60 or 90 days, to come back, pay back the loan, with interest, and get their item back. People looking for a steady source of extra income have no intention of coming back for the item. This leaves the pawn shop owner in the position to sell it in his shop for a profit.
Pawning and You
Yes, you can earn a quick bit of cash by pawning unwanted jewelry, watches and family heirlooms, but if you truly want to create a viable source of income, you must know how to play the pawning game. Pawn shops are out to earn a profit, which means that they are more likely to give you money for items they know they can mark up and sell in their shop.
That means, they aren't going to shell out big bucks for another piece of jewelry when they already have hundreds just like it waiting to be sold. Instead, pawn shop owners are looking for items that they don't already have or items that they know there is a market for. For example, a pawn shop owner might be willing to pay you handsomely for an antique brooch worn by someone famous or a well-known book or poem signed by the author.
How to Do It Right
Look through your house to see what you have to get rid of. Unwanted items might turn a small profit. Make more money by scouring garage sales and picking through thrift stores. There are often jewels to be found in these places that you can buy at rock-bottom prices and turn around and sell to a pawn shop owner who could then sell at an even higher price to a collector.
Picking up interesting items left on the curb for the trash is another way to discover hidden gems. In other words, offer a pawn shop owner something they can't find anywhere else.